Tavis Smiley says PBS made mistake in suspending him

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He went on to slam PBS for conducting the investigation without informing him about it and only doing so after his lawyers threatened to sue. They also accused Smiley of creating a hostile work environment.

In an interview with Good Morning America on Monday, Smiley said that all of the relationships he had with employees were consensual - and that PBS didn't give him a chance to fully tell his side of the story. "Tavis Smiley needs to get his story straight", a spokeswoman for PBS said in an email to CNN's Brian Stelter.

"I certainly understand people can have a viewpoint any consensual relationship in the workplace is wrong ... but there are also other points of view on this", he said.

"It's mind-boggling to me that they kind of play this game of pick and choose. who they want to talk to", he said.

"These environments are intense at times.so when the ball drops I have to deal with that", Smiley explained.

PBS announced last week that it will "indefinitely" suspend distribution of the 53-year-old host's show and namesake, "Tavis Smiley", after an investigation by an outside law firm revealed that Smiley had engaged in sexual relationships with subordinates. "I'm not an angry Black man".

"The PBS investigators refused to review any of my personal documentation, refused to provide me the names of any accusers, refused to speak to my current staff and refused to provide me any semblance of due process to defend myself against allegations from unknown sources", Smiley added. PBS did not immediately respond to TIME's request for comment about Smiley's statements. This contradicts his Facebook post from last week, where he cited only one previous relationship with an employee.

"In our employee handbook, while we do not encourage office relationships, we do not forbid them either", Smiley said on "GMA".


"Vague questions, Smiley explained - "Might you ever have done this?" stuff".

"PBS stands by its decision to respect the anonymity of those who are afraid to come forward publicly".

Smiley is the latest prominent figure in the news media, politics and the entertainment industry to face misconduct allegations.

So it doesn't sound like PBS is shifting off its indefinite suspension position even a little.

A sponsor of his talk show, Walmart, paused its relationship with him in light of the investigation.

Tucker Carlson asked whether he was indeed being accused of a "nonspecific sex crime" from someone he didn't know.

The show - a tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. - was produced by the Saratoga Springs-based company Mills Entertainment, and to visit a number of stops, including Proctors Theater in Schenectady, beginning next year, the Nippertown online magazine reported.

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